Posts for tag: Ingrown Toenails
Ingrown toenails can be quite painful and if they are not treated, an infection could develop. Infection can lead to additional problems so it is important to treat the affected toenail right away. Ingrown toenails can often be treated at home with the right methods. If at-home care is ineffective, the skilled doctors at Kentucky/Indiana Foot and Ankle Specialists in Louisville, KY can treat your ingrown toenails. In addition to several locations in Louisville, we also have offices in Indiana and other areas of Kentucky.
Causes of Ingrown Toenails
When a toenail grows too close to the skin it can press against the skin and cause inflammation and discomfort. This is referred to as an ingrown toenail. Ingrown nails develop on the big toes most often.
Several factors can cause the nail to grow too close to the skin. Common causes include:
- An injury to the toes or feet
- A fungal infection on the toes or feet
- Wearing shoes or socks that are too tight
- Trimming the toenails too short or too close to the skin
- Curving or angling the nails rather than trimming them straight across
It is possible to treat ingrown toenails with at-home care. With the right treatment methods, you can ease the pain and discomfort of an ingrown nail and prevent infection from setting in. Tips for at-home care of ingrown toenails include:
- Take over-the-counter pain relievers for pain or discomfort
- Apply anti-fungal or antibiotic ointment to prevent infection
- Soak the feet in warm water several times a day to soften the nail so it can be trimmed away from the skin
- Massage the toenail while soaking in water to reduce inflammation
- Place cotton or waxed dental floss beneath the ingrown nail after soaking to help the nail grow above the skin
- Wear sandals or loose-fitting socks and shoes until the nail heals
At-home care can be extremely effective in alleviating pain and discomfort and helping the nail to grow away from the skin. However, it is best to contact one of our offices in Louisville for help treating your ingrown toenails if inflammation and pain persist or an infection develops. Sometimes professional intervention is needed to completely resolve the problem.
Preventing Ingrown Toenails
Certain steps can be taken to prevent ingrown toenails from returning again down the road. Toenails should always be trimmed straight across and never too short. Cutting the nails too close to the skin can cause them to become ingrown. Wearing shoes and socks that are not too tight can also prevent ingrown nails from developing. Additionally, keeping the feet clean and dry is an effective way to prevent fungal infections that can lead to ingrown toenails.
You can care for ingrown toenails at home but should seek professional treatment if pain and inflammation persist. For the treatment of ingrown toenails, call Kentucky/Indiana Foot and Ankle Specialists in Louisville at 1-844-MY2-FEET (1-844-692-3338). We have several locations throughout Louisville and other areas of Kentucky, including Elizabethtown, Bardstown, and Bowling Green, as well as an office in New Albany, IN.
Are ingrown toenails a frequent problem for you? The podiatrists at Kentucky/Indiana Foot and Ankle Specialists see many patients just like you in their New Albany, IN, and Elizabethtown, Bardstown, Bowling Green, and Louisville, KY, office. Fortunately, it may be possible to lower your risk of ingrown toenails simply by following these suggestions.
Change the way you trim your toenails
Do you round your toenails because the edges tend to snag your socks? Rounding the nails makes it much easier for them to grow into your skin. Cutting the nails straight across offers a simple solution to the problem. If snags are an issue, try filing the nails lightly to eliminate rough edges. Be sure not to file them so much that the edges are no longer square.
Keep it loose
Constant pressure on your nails can drive the edges into your skin. Choose shoes and socks that offer a little wiggle room to reduce your ingrown toenail risk.
Treat toenail fungus
Fungal infections not only turn your toenails yellow, but also cause them to thicken. When the nails are thick, they're more likely to grow into the skin. If over-the-counter fungal treatments aren't helpful, make an appointment with your foot doctor in New Albany, IN, or Elizabethtown, Bardstown, Bowling Green and Louisville, KY.
Take a look at your toes
Check your nails every few days if you're prone to developing ingrown toenails. If the nail has just started to grow into your skin, you may be able to free it yourself. Soak your foot in warm water for 15 or 20 minutes, then gently place dental floss or a small piece of cotton under the nail to free it. Keep floss or cotton under the nail until it grows out. (Replace the floss or cotton every day.)
Don't try to free your ingrown toenail yourself if you have diabetes. Attempting to treat the nail at home may increase your risk of infection. Call your podiatrist instead.
Know when to call the foot doctor
Let your podiatrist know if you can't free your nail yourself, the toe is very painful, or you notice red streaks or pus on the toe.
Do you have a painful ingrown toenail? The foot doctors at Kentucky/Indiana Foot and Ankle Specialists can ease your pain. Schedule an appointment with the Louisville, KY, area podiatrists by calling (502) 968-2233 for Louisville, KY, Outer Loop office, (502) 805-3338 for the Louisville, KY, Dixie Highway office, (270) 737-3338 for the Elizabethtown, KY, office, (502) 331-6307 for the Bardstown, KY, office, (270) 796-6160 for the Bowling Green, KY, office, or (812) 725-7542 for the New Albany, IN, office